The benefits of open plan living design

by | May 24, 2024 | Uncategorized

If you’ve been looking at layouts online or even visiting display homes, you may have noticed all modern homes seem to have a design feature in common. Open plan living has become the norm in Aussie houses and it’s unlikely to go out of style anytime soon. Open plan living is when rooms are connected in a large space rather than being enclosed away from each other. The most common example of this is the kitchen and dining zones being part of a large open plan space, with the living zone often being included in this area.

But why has open plan living become so commonplace in Australian house design? Let’s open up the discussion on the benefits of open-plan living design.

Improved natural light & ventilation

Making the most of natural light has a wide range of benefits for your home. Using the sun’s light means your house isn’t dark during the day and you’ll cut down on lighting costs. The open rooms are easier to ventilate .

You can increase the natural light in your home by installing sky lights in the dining room ceiling, and large, floor-to-ceiling windows and by designing your home to suit the sun’s orientation.

Helps create a spacious feel

By removing the walls that would usually create individual rooms, open plan spaces help a home feel more spacious. This helps your home feel more welcoming, makes it easier for traffic to flow from the kitchen bench to the dining room table and creates a free-flowing space between the kitchen, living and dining rooms. The spacious feeling of an open room will help your house feel larger. This could be particularly nice if you’re living in a smaller home.

The extra space afforded by the lack of walls gives you an opportunity to add extra features such as a breakfast bar, an island bench, coffee tables, an entertainment unit and more.

Modern aesthetic appeal

An open plan living area has become the preferred layout in most modern homes in Australia. It better suits the modern living space. In fact, having separate rooms for your dining rooms, kitchen and living space will give your house a more old-fashioned, traditional feel.

Increased property value

An open plan layout is a popular design in modern homes, creating free-flowing spaces that Australian homeowners tend to expect nowadays. The open plan living space is often the focal point of the whole house, and when done well, can be the difference in whether you sell the house and for how much.

Enhanced functionality

With the wide open area, your living spaces can become multifunctional spaces. While you prepare dinner you can chat with your kids who are doing their homework at the living room table. When friends are over, everyone can spread out both in and out the house without anyone feeling segregated.

Enhanced social interaction between family & guests

Open spaces allow for more area entertaining and family interaction. People can prepare snacks in the kitchen and easily have a discussion with someone sitting at the dining table. Open spaces allow for a more welcoming feel to your home, especially when natural light fills your home.

Are there any potential drawbacks of open plan living design?

Every layout is going to have some potential weaknesses, and although open plan living spaces have become the norm, they’re not perfect. Let’s take a look at some of the potential issues homeowners can have with an open plan living space.

Less Privacy

We all need breathing room from our loved ones now and again, so it’s important to have some places where you can get a little privacy. The open-plan area obviously lends itself more to communal experiences than private moments, so it may be worth having separate rooms where people can get a little time to themselves.

There are ways around this, like creating a cosy living area for movie nights or relaxing while still having an open area for your kitchen and dining space.

Can look messy

Kids, pets and even adults can be messy sometimes and an open space does allow a mess to sprawl out more easily.

Cooking smells can spread throughout the house

Sometimes the smell of a delicious meal wafting through the house is wonderful, but certain meals are more universally loved than others. Stronger-smelling foods like curries or seafood might not please everyone if they linger for a while.

Could be more expensive to heat and cool

The larger space may take longer to heat in the colder months, which may add to your energy bills. There are ways to minimise this such as investing in good insulation and building to suit the sun’s orientation.

The plus side is an open floor plan that can make it easier to cool a house down during the summer months. Opening up the home will increase the potential to let out warm air while catching any cool breeze.

Our tips for building with open plan living design

  • Like any design choice, open planning needs to be done well to get the most out of it. Be sure you also take into account factors such as your home’s orientation to get as much natural light as possible.
  • If you’re trying to make your home look larger, lighter colours for your walls will help expand the illusion provided by an open floor plan. Other features that will help include larger windows and wise furniture placement.

Buildi is here to help you throughout your building journey

Building a new home is always a daunting tasks, but with Buildi’s help, you can navigate the journey while saving time, effort and money. We know all the tricks to getting the most from your builder, and the traps many homeowners fall into (just avoiding one of these common mistakes can save you thousands of dollars!).

Buildi is here to give power back to the consumer. Still not convinced? Why not get in touch with us for a free consultation to discuss your project?


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Knockdown Rebuild

Home designs

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